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So as per the title it's a hello again!
Apologies I've been gone a while (2yrs) due to work commitments and moving home.
After visits to the Kennedy Space Centre this summer and having just returned from the National Space Centre in Leicester (kids sleepover party), I dusted off my trusty little Dob and managed to get some fantastic views of Saturn for the family and even watched the ISS go by.
Astro fun reinvigorated, clear skies fellow loungers.
It's difficult to get a sense of scale in this astronomy game; but we try. So here are 8 pics of the ISS passing between Vega and Epsilon Lyra last night - which is a second's worth of my Canon 7D firing off as fast as it can. The background is a single 30 second tracked exposure for a bit of context. Details: Esprit 100 prime focus/Canon 7D:1/1000s ISO1600 +30s background. The trick if you want to try this is to use planetarium software to find out exactly when the ISS will be near a bright object, then pre-align and focus on or near that object, then wait for the ISS to appear in the finder before letting the shutter go in rapid mode. I also optimised pre-focus on the computer using the focus feature on Nebulosity before switching the camera back to stand alone mode.
I have written a blog post about imaging artificial satellites, with a focus on the ISS. Since the SGL challenge is precisely about that, it thought it could be interesting to share.
The article is there:
It has a bit of background in the beginning on satellites and how imaging a satellite is similar to a satellite imaging the ground, plus some discussion about the different types of mount and tracking and of what limits imaging performance. The conclusion is that a dob + a high-speed, high resolution camera is a good way to go to make images like these:
There are some very nice images from other people in there too.